Think tank recognizes public scholarship of four Rossier profs

January 12, 2018

Annual rankings from American Enterprise Institute emphasize influence

By Ross Brenneman

Photo: From L-R: Profs. WIlliam G. Tierney, Shaun R. Harper, Morgan Polikoff and Estela Mara Bensimon

The American Enterprise Institute has ranked four scholars from USC Rossier among those doing the most to influence policy and scholarship in the United States.

The list, published annually in Education Week by columnist and AEI Director of Education Policy Studies Rick Hess, ranks 200 university and college education professors based on a rubric that emphasizes public scholarship.

Profs. William G. Tierney, Shaun R. Harper, Morgan Polikoff and Estela Bensimon made the list this year. All four also made the list in the 2017 edition.

Rankings emphasize professors who write books, but also consider media mentions, Congressional Record mentions and social media presence.

“Scores are designed to acknowledge scholars who are actively engaged in public discourse and whose work has an impact on practice and policy,” Hess writes in explaining the rankings.

All four ranked USC Rossier scholars had high profiles in 2017. Tierney, a past president of the American Educational Research Association as well as the Association for the Study of Higher Education, continued his work as co-director of the Pullias Center for Higher Education. Harper presided over ASHE this year, and was sought out by the University of Virginia in the wake of a Nazi rally at that campus this past summer. Bensimon and Polikoff, meanwhile, in addition to their scholarship, received major honors from AERA, the country’s largest educational research organization.

Those ranked in the top 150 from the previous year are given an automatic spot in the following year’s ranks; a panel of 31 scholars who are already on the list selects the other 50.

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